Most companies go through the same EDI cycle, they start out with a web based EDI solution which has a low entry cost point, but then upgrade to an Internet based EDI solution once their data and user costs start to spiral out of control. The next step in that cycle is then to outsource data storage to a cloud solution to reduce the cost and time of data security. So what do you need to know about Cloud EDI solutions software?
The Major Advantages of Cloud EDI Solutions Software
Security of data being interchanged has become more and more prevalent as data breaches, hacks and legislation have made all corporations aware that their data needs to be as secure as possible. While it might make sense that you manage this inhouse so that you have total control over it, the realization is that giving your IT Security team the responsibility of ensuring inter-organizational data is safe for interchange, as well as with customers and suppliers, is a very large task and expensive too.
This becomes increasingly more difficult as encryption keys expire, more users are added and you try to add and delete new suppliers and partners who have different systems. A lot of testing is required every time a new partner is added, and during that testing period the system can be very vulnerable. Any changes in hardware and software by the organization and its partners result in further maintenance and testing, and this becomes an ongoing job which results in downtime and security concerns.
This is why most larger organizations and now increasingly smaller organizations are outsourcing their data storage to a third party cloud gateway. The advantages of this are obvious once you realize that all connectivity testing is outsourced. Support of all major communication protocols is already set up and tested, so new trading partners can be connected quickly and securely. The helpdesk function is outsourced so any user with connectivity problems can resolve their issues quickly. Maintenance and renewal of encryption certificates used in the interchange of data are also outsourced.
Another advantage to consider is scalability. When you own your own hardware and connection you have to constantly consider scalability, and often have to duplicate the system which will support the growth of your partner network due to having to have a disaster recovery back up system. The software employed by outsourced EDI providers uses clustering and load-balancing architecture to ensure not only that you always have enough capacity but also that it is continuously available and is performing at high speeds.
So the next evolution in EDI solutions is cloud EDI solutions. If your organization and its partners wants secure and available systems for exchange of data then this is a task most IT departments can’t handle on their own. There may be some reticence from your IT Security Manager at first, but once they understand the advantages of outsourcing testing and encryption key renewals they will be onboard.